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sprint180

!! PEARL to Alaska !! july 27th with pictures

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We are headed there on August 24th! Can't wait!!! How was the weather?

 

The weather was nice. Wore a tshirt and sweater most of the time and took off sweater when I got warm. At it's coldest I wore a thermal shirt, sweat shirt and jacket. I think mostly in 50's and 60's

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Card Room - they had several games like monopoly, chutes and ladders, dominos, uno, etc but I'm sure all the pieces weren't there by the end of the cruise. Kids would come in and just leave everything lay when they were done and you would find pieces on the floor. So if there is something you really want to play I would take my own.

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Bliss ( I believe)

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In Bliss they have Bowling and trivia and such.

 

Bad view of the big screen in the lobby

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Day 3 - Juneau

Today we weren't scheduled to get into Juneau until 2pm so we mostly just lazed around. We did have a flash mob rehearsal to go to in the morning and I believe we did some Trivia. And, I'm sure we took a nap. We arrived right on time to Juneau. Here our excursion was Whale watching. My daughter and I were excited but the boys were not, they thought it would be boring.

I chose to go through Harv and Marv and not use a ship excursion. Harv and Marv use small boats and there were only 6 people on our boat. Most of the other boats we saw had many more people on it. We had Captain Russel. The boys thought he was a hoot. He wasn't "tour guide" type at all. He explained some to us about whales and we headed out. He was really funny and we overheard the other captains calling him the "whale whisper" so we figured he could find whales. And boy did he. We got to watch the whales bubble net feed. It was amazing. He thought there was around 12 whales in the group. He said not all whales know how to do this. A mother teaches their baby if they know how, if they don't they will never learn. I did fell kind of bad that we were bothering the whales but to be honest, as they swam within 5 feet of my boat, I got over that. It was amazing just to listen to them breathe and slowly dive under the water. Just amazing, I would recommend this to everyone. And, the boys thought it was their favorite excursion.

Last year we did a salmon fishing excursion. We went out at 8am and were done at 10:30am. There were six of us on the boat and there were to guides. About 9am the guide tells us we won't catch anything until the tide comes in at yep... 10:30. And we didn't. Very frustrating that we paid over $200 each and pretty much had no chance of catching a fish. I would not recommend this unless you know when the tide is coming in.

Tomorrow I will post pictures

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Fun report! and great to have another family report that includes teens.

 

BTW, the 'train' you mentioned is the LIGHT RAIL. It costs $2.75 from the airport to Westlake Center downtown. If you can easily manage your luggage, it's a great option. The train station is a 7-10 minute walk from the luggage carousel. It's flat and covered but it's still a walk.

 

Here's the info on Light Rail for anyone who's interested:

http://www.soundtransit.org/Schedules/Central-Link-light-rail

Edited by mapleleaves

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Thanks for all the great info .. can't wait to read the rest :)

 

Just 39 more days until I will be on the Pearl :D

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We also saw these guys

ry%3D400

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the boat was plenty big for 6 people

After we were done whale watching the shuttle driver stopped at Mendenhall Glacier for about 20 minutes. We walked up to the visitors center but it was closing as we got there so we snapped a couple of pictures and headed back to the bus.

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As we were leaving we noticed a group of people looking up into the trees. So, we looked up and our driver said she thought there was a baby bear up in a tree by a look out spot. So we piled out to look. Now, I know what you are thinking. Is it really smart to jump out of the safety of a vehicle and stand with in a couple feet of a tree with a baby bear in it. Momma has to be close by. I'm pretty sure no one thought of that as we piled out to see the baby bear.

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What? it doesn't look like a bear. Well you are right. It is a porcupine. I've pulled enough quills out of my dogs noses to not need to get any closer so back on the bus and off we head. Our shuttle driver, trying her best to please, stopped at a salmon hatchery for every one to look. I have seen many hatcheries in my day. Living in Nebraska you are almost guaranteed to visit one on a field trip. And I have driven on every field trip my 5 kids have been on except one. I stayed on the bus.

After everyone was back on we headed back to town. She dropped my family off at the Red Dog Saloon and took everyone else back to the ship as it was getting late and no one was sure when the shuttles were available. My daughter was on the hunt for a warm jacket and some warm socks. She found the jacket, no socks. We got to the shuttle pick up spot just as the bus to the Pearl was loading to go to the ship.

Comedian Bud Andersen was tonights entertainment. As a fellow Nebraskan I would like to say he was awesome. He wasn't. But, he wasn't bad either. He kept us entertained for the evening and that was good for us.

Tomorrow - Skagway

Edited by sprint180

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Fun pictures - thanks for sharing! (Love the "baby bear"!)

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ry%3D400

they were right by our boat

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I absolutely loved this picture. We did the excursion with Harv and Marv back at the beginning of June. We were too early to catch the "bubble feeding of the whales". We did get nice and close a couple of times though. If I had seen this picture in person myself I probably would have "peed my pants" and surely if I was in the boat that was shown in this picture. This is AWESOME!!! What an experience. Now I have to go back in July to try to see this for myself in person. HOLY WHALES!!! (instead of holy cow!)

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Day 4 - Skagway

7 am to 7:45 pm

 

last year we took the train excursion, I think the 3 hour one. It was very pretty and I took a million pictures but that was long enough. I thought it was kind of boring.

 

This year we booked the Adventure Wilderness Rafting excursion (well it is called something like that) for 10:30 but it was changed to 3:30. Since we were in no hurry to get off the ship we took our time and waited till there was no one coming off. We headed off the ship and walked into town. There is a shuttle but it costs (I am told) and uptown is a very short walk. We walked around town for a while and came across this building.

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You really can't miss it and it is the visitors bureau. We asked for ideas of what to do and they were very helpful. They gave us three ideas for walking tours, they also told how far it was and how long it would probably take to get there. We chose the one that ended up at a waterfall. It was a two mile walk to a cemetery then up a trail to the waterfall. Although I had no desire to visit a cemetery it was interesting how they seemed to just find a spot to bury someone in the midst of all the rocks and trees. I believe there is some bad guy that is buried there.

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There is a trail through the cemetery that goes up into the hill to the waterfall. It is a short walk and not terribly strenuous. We were there fairly early and no one was there but tours and others started showing up as we were there.

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We left when the people started coming and started on our 2 mile walk back to town. I decided to see if there was any geocaches around and low and behold we were close to one. I am posting a pic because it is a really easy one. We left a ncl smashed penny and took a penny so we could smash another.

Found it !

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And a walking we go.

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After we got back to town we walked around until it was time for our excursion

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Ocean Raft Wildlife Adventure -

After we all met we were walked across the street to the adventure rafting office. There is no need to take bags or backpacks etc because you can not take them on the raft. They are kept at the office in totes. You then suit up in orange survival suits and walk down to the boat. The black head caps are optional but most took one. Goggles are also available. The caps hold your hair, keep you warm, and keep the wind out of your ears. I appreciated it but all I could think of was the head lice outbreak we had at school last year.

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You don't sit on regular seats in the boat you set on these seats that you ride like a horse with a handle in front of you that you need to hang on to.

As we headed out we rode along the shore and saw nests, seals (?), and lots of waterfalls. The guide gave lots of interesting commentary as we went, we even had an interesting conversation about chickens. He told me I could tell what color of eggs my chickens would lay by looking in their ears. I haven't checked that out yet. When we seen the seals he joked that you could tell what color the babies would be by looking in moms ears.

eagle nest

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striations from glaciers

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the name of this waterfall had something to do with long

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I took a pic of this waterfall last year and had to laugh when I seen the same pic on my mother in laws wall from my sister in laws trip to Alaska. And now I have another.

ry%3D400

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We saw several waterfalls.

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The boat driver got pretty wild at times, even my son said he thought he was going to get flung out at times. The driver liked to spin cookies with the boat. He would go really fast, and several times I envisioned myself flinging out and smacking into the rocks. It wasn't enjoyable to me but some teens that were in there thought it was funny. As for the excursion I thought it was pretty expensive for what we got

 

I felt like an astronaut

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After we were done I headed back to the ship but the kids decided to head back into town for a while. Of course I had to eat, it had been quite a while.;)

Edited by sprint180

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Tonight was the Second City Comedy and the White Hot Party where we were to do the Flash Mob. We did not sign up for the murder mystery lunch because when we saw the Second City show on the first night they were not funny. I didn't want to see this show but the kids did. Second City was slightly better tonight. Then it was to the White Hot Party for the Flash Mob. We dressed up in our white shirts and headed to the party. When they started the music Amanda and I headed out to the dance floor. Some others did too but a lot of people that came to the rehearsals did not. Anyway, I didn't remember most of it. We stayed at the party for a little while but it was pretty hot in the Spinnaker and the boys didn't want to dance so we left. We walked around a while then off to bed.

White Hot Party

ry%3D400

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Day 5 - Glacier Bay

We didn't get up too early today. It was nice to just sleep in. We went through Glacier Bay in the morning so it was cool out but not bad. We watched from our balcony most of the day. If you are questioning if you "need" a balcony, for most I would say no, but in Alaska it is really nice. No need to fight the crowd to be able to see.

I don't know if I have the right name to these glaciers and I know I don't know how to spell them. So if you all know please correct me.

Grand pacific

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Marjerie Glacier

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Topeka

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Johns Hopkins

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Tonights entertainment was ventriloquist Jim Barber. Now please don't get me wrong. If you like ventriloquists I'm sure he was good. I just think it is weird. I thought the whole show was weird. So I guess that is all I have to say about that.

 

Tomorrow Ketchikan

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Does anyone know why some of my pictures are not showing up today. They showed up last night but now a couple have x's.

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Day 6 - Ketchikan

6 am to 1:30 pm

 

Magnificent Misty Fjords Seaplane was our Excursion, and bright and early at 6:30. I was a bit worried that it would be foggy as it was early and the sun hadn't gotten all warmed up yet but no worries, it was beautiful. Our pilot was really interesting as he grew up in Ketchikan and has lived there all his life. He even took free flying lessons in high school at school. He also said he had never been to Skagway, which surprised me for some reason. And the week before had just been to Juneau and took a helicopter tour. Anyhow, the tour itself was nice. If you can't tell I'm not a great photographer and it was difficult to get a good view out of the plane. The windows were small and depending on where you sat you either had a good view or not. My daughter sat in the co pilot seat on the way there and my son on the way back. I'm not sure my daughter liked it or not as I think she spent the whole time watching what he was doing incase he had a heart attack. ;) ;)what can I say, she is a worrier. So here are some pics.

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ry%3D400

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We landed on this little "lake" and we were allowed to get out and stand on the floats to take pictures.

ry%3D400

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ry%3D400

Our plane and pilot.

I was glad to be done with this tour. I hadn't taken Dramamine because I thought it was a short tour and it makes me sooo tired. I wish I would have though. Also, the fuel fumes were strong as I was right by the door and those were giving me a headache. None of my other family noticed it.

Here are guys we found swimming in the water.

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After we got back we walked up to Creek Street. I did not get very good pictures this time but I'll post a couple

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The highlight of my kids trip to Ketchikan

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Edited by sprint180

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ry%3D400

When I was in Ketchikan year ago in June I thought it was much prettier. Lots of flowers. And I keep hearing how much it rains in Ketchikan but It has not rained here or in Seattle either time.

Back on ship we ate, walked around and napped. That night the kids went to the Second City show and we all went to the comedy show but it was so crowded there was no where to sit and we stood by the bar. It was pretty noisy so we headed to our room.

I about for got to say. When we got back on the ship I went to the excursion desk to find out when our tour was as we hadn't been told. He told me we weren't on the list so no tour for us. I explained that I had booked as soon as I got on and he would only say. "You are not on the list." I was really mad. It was the one thing I was looking forward to and I couldn't go. But also, I have done enough customer service in my life, a

"I'm sorry, there was a mess up" would have went a long way, but no all I got was a "you are not on the list"

Tomorrow Victoria

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Day 7 - Victoria

6 pm to 11:30 pm

Since we had all day we slept in. Our first order of business wasn't until 11:15 when we had to go see if the tickets I bought for a free cruise were a winner. That was at Bingo, Once there though we bought some Bingo cards and peel off tickets. Of course we didn't win. Not even close but it was fun.

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We didn't have a tour in Victoria so after the rush was done we got off. We chose to walk down the water front to downtown. Boy was it worth it. I was really tired of walking but I didn't mind. the Parliament Building (?) was beautiful and there was "The Ceremony of the Flags" going on. So we got to see another " parade " of sorts.

ry%3D400

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